Very Dirty Stories Backstory: "Angel: The Beginning (An Angel Story)"
Angel: The Beginning (An Angel Story)
The story of Angel and Tom begins with a chance meeting in "London DJ (An Angel Story)". The gritty Southern setting with its ridiculous bright yellow paint on a warehouse surrounded by crumbling parking lots and abandoned buildings deliberately reflects the contrast between old and new that is a critical inspiration for the heat and innocence Angel shares with Tom in his bed.
But there's more to it than just a night out at the club. This is Angel's native environment; not necessarily the one she grew up in, but definitely the one that she would consider home. For Tom, this is foreign and hostile territory, so he puts much more value on Angel's casual friendliness than someone more settled into the city would. In fact, the persistent hostility directed toward him is something that Angel notices right away. It defines Tom as a fellow rebel, someone who doesn't conform, and how he chooses to deal with the distaste directed his way draws her to him.
Even when every sign is opposed to their union - the thugs in the parking lot, the social rejection at the club, the bed frame collapsing while Tom thrusts into Angel's sex - they press forward anyway. This defines them as a couple and makes it clear why their tortured attempts at making it work are so resistant to any attempt to sever them.
"Angel: The Beginning" provides the setting details that couldn't fit into "London DJ (An Angel Story)" as an erotic story. The narrative immersion foreshadows the chaos and order that Angel and Tom face throughout their lives.
The darkness has always kept company with fallen angels.
Backstory: "Angel: The Beginning (An Angel Story)"
From: Sisters of Mercy - "Torch"
"And now the torch
And shadows lead
Were it not so black and not so hard to see
How can it help you when you don't know what you need
How can anybody set you free?
Would he walk upon the water
If he couldn't walk away?
And would you
Would you carry the torch
And what if I gave you the key
To the doors of your design...
Lit the corridors of desire?
Where if not so black
And not so hard to see
What use to you then any fire?"
Writer: Andrew Eldritch
Lyrics © EMI Music Publishing
It was the late 90s and the economy of the U.S. had decidedly shifted from the North to the South. Nobody asked if the South was ready or if the Southern folk knew what was coming. Tom was just one of hundreds of thousands of professionals that transitioned from New England and the Midwest to the Carolinas and Georgia in a wave of resettlement that fundamentally changed places like Charlotte and Atlanta.
Whether they were bankers or technology workers, what they found was a strange environment where some businesses had morning prayer breakfasts and a heated meeting about the best way to redeploy infrastructure might devolve into an argument about whose gran'pappy had signed secession papers at the start of the Civil War. The opportunity was there. The growth potential was enormous. But everything was changing and no one knew what they should be hoping for.
Angel came from a family with a small farm outside of Charlotte. Tom had moved from New England to the Midwest to Texas back to the Midwest and then down to North Carolina. Angel could trace her family back four generations to her babcia from the old country on her mother's side and six generations of landowners and clergymen on her father's side. Tom had largely eschewed his family and was comfortably free with no roots and no ties.
When he ran across a flyer for a new club with a DJ straight from London, Tom decided it was time to go out and actually start exploring more than the route from his short term corporate hotel accommodations and the towering Uptown offices he worked in. It seemed like a good plan. He'd just gotten back from London after all, and he needed something to take off the edge. Something to distract him from the pressing urge to pull the eject lever and get the hell out of the disorganized chaos and passionate confusion of the South. A short term plan for a night out seemed smart as a distraction from an evening spent recounting all the things wrong with the long term trajectory.
A girl spends a lot of time getting ready in the South. Queue Rosetta Stone slowly building up to "An Eye for the Main Chance" followed by Peter Murphy crooning "Cuts You Up." Angel's tea is slowly cooling on her dresser while she pulls out her customary black attire. By the time she's cycled through a few more songs to "Marian" by Sisters of Mercy - you cannot play Rosetta Stone and Sisters of Mercy too close together after all because they sound so much alike - Angel's biggest complaint is her hair. The heat and humidity have sucked the life out of it. In a flash of inspiration, Angel yanks off her top and grabs the Elmer's glue from her fiancé's desk. It only takes a bit of kettle water and sacrificing a big hair comb to start artfully shaping her shoulder length soft brown waves into conflicting non-euclidean geometries. Punk style.
Tom's always fifteen minutes from being ready. Combat boots he broke in over the last few years while trapped in St. Louis. BDUs with comfortable side pockets for his wallet and keys. Black t-shirt. He feels dumb grabbing his light leather jacket. Tom's not even sure that he'll ever be able to wear leather in the ridiculous sweltering heat of the South - but he has no feel for the diurnal range and doesn't want to be freezing and shaking like a leaf when he gets out of the club. Double check and he's got everything including the rental car keys. He has to look over a city map he bought two weeks before, but he has a good idea where he's going. Just barely within the I-277 loop. When he gets off at South Boulevard and cuts down East Stonewall Street to South McDowell Street, Tom discovers this is a collection of decaying city blocks with a few warehouses and crumpled asphalt parking lots with weeds growing through the pavement. Surprise.
Anyone else might have been turned off by that, but the clubs that Tom goes to rarely have much street front appeal. Oz was probably the prettiest club Tom had been to in a long while, but the rest of the St. Louis and Chicago clubs were all in crumbling abandoned neighborhoods. Only when there is nothing left to take, when all their hopes and dreams have fled, will owners just rent out the space hoping to make enough to cover taxes and wait for the next neighborhood revitalization movement to boost their investment. That was the story of punk, industrial, and goth clubs across most of the country based on Tom's experience.
But the South has a few surprises. Small time thugs suddenly thrust into wealthy prospects. Seasoned paranoids suddenly uneasy in new territories. You have to expect those to collide.
Angel's in her old Buick, a hand me down from her biological father, and pulling into the parking lot. She's feeling the vibe while slowly cruising the big boulevards to Dead Can Dance. She has to take it slow because the Buick hasn't got a lot of life left in it. Everything is slowly winding down in her life, but she feels like opportunity is right around the corner. Something will change it all. Ghost seemed to know and was very talkative while Angel scooted around him to get out the door. Her white cat always seemed to know these things - his light blue eyes deep like waters of the soul and shiny like the mirrored lens of the future. She parked and checked her makeup in the mirror. Ready to go.
The altercation in the parking lot and moving his car was just enough of a delay to allow Angel to climb the yellow stairs and vanish into the second floor warehouse club before Tom saw her. He parked two spaces from her Buick, unaware of the fates twisting and tangling him in their web, and got out without looking back at his rental. Tom was all eyes forward now - his peripheral vision rimmed with targets as he processed everything around him as a threat. He made sure to scuff his boots a bit to brush off any blood on the gravel and grass, and then hit the slick painted stairs taking two at a time. His entire body was at the ready when he pulled out his ID in one fluid motion from his wallet, and the door man spent an extra minute skimming the Missouri format looking for a date of birth. Then Tom flowed into the dark club where some garbage electro-mod crap was belting out of a poorly configured speaker risers.
If he hadn't left a kid busted up in a parking lot half a block away then Tom would have turned around and left before paying the door cover. But he knew that he needed to kill an hour or so before he could wander out of the club, just another guy dressed in black, and anonymously head back to his hotel. Whatever that took. He went to the floor, took a seat on the bench running along the side wall, and started to wait. Hands still twitching, feeling the urge to lash out and level the world... to make it the world that it should be. Better to dance, better to talk to the DJ and find out when the London guy would start his set. Better to move than to be still with his anger spiraling and gathering strength.
The people around Tom were just dust waiting to happen. He felt that. From somewhere else, deep within his connection to things far outside these measured spaces, Tom sensed more. Moments falling into place, a nexus of decisions and consequences, beckoning like an opening embrace. He danced with the dust, feeling the reverberation of the entire building and every desire and soul within it. Crashing down, charging the DJ booth and pushing them to get on the same page. Black ink on smudged paper rewinding and unspooling immaculate manuscript onto the request list as he suggested roughly a third of the playlist from Slimelight the Saturday before. One look at the DJs in the booth though, and Tom knew he was in the wrong place with the wrong people. The stars would burn through him, but the world would not change. Tom would not get what he expected.
The unexpected was watching him. Angel. Her eyes on his body, his strangeness, his confidence, and his singularity in a sea of otherwise familiar shapes and forms. He was tugging on her strings - his density pulling Angel into his orbit. The clock was counting down to midnight, but they didn't know it yet. Armageddon doesn't start when the bombs are dropped - it starts decades before in a dark room where someone can't get to sleep and imagines peace in glimpses of a broad winged bomber capable of a multi-megaton payload and imagines the serenity of vast deep silos for enormous ICBMs. Tick tock.
Calling upon the moon itself, silver flowing through his arteries and bringing his heart to a slow steady rhythm, Tom released his anguish. There was nothing like it in these new lands. All that inbred passion and self-loathing that fills the South like murky thick mud... and it's nothing compared to the cutting edge of Tom's rage and desire. The floor never stops, but an audience forms along the bar and the long wall bench. And still a singularity shatters the imposed reality, cuts through group hypnosis, and is free. They glare at it, stare it down, mutter about it, but their judgment is beneath his notice. They are obstacles, murmuring currents in a ocean which Tom must cross, and he breaches the schism with fluid motion that defines the space which he can take and shape with his bare hands.
Angel never let him out of her sight. Even when he stopped. Even when he growled to the dust surrounding him, expressing his displeasure, and strode off the floor. Better to face the thugs again, to have the satisfying feel of something solid crunching underfoot, and Angel saw his determination for a different world. Better she follow him, understand him, than let that singular thing escape her reach. They would have collided - but he is aware of everything in motion and with the ease of a single gesture places Angel in equilibrium.
His touch on her shoulder brings the puzzle pieces into place. Order is created with deliberate intent. Angel never notices the other options; she chooses the one path that she wants. She joins him.
The clock strikes midnight. Tick Tock. That's how Angel and Tom begin.
Want her? Sexual exploration can lead to dark discoveries!
Does angry sex make it better?
Does angry sex make it better?
Angel fuels Tom's passions and his rage. If there is a single opiate Tom cannot set aside - it is Angel. Their recurring encounters, along with the epic lengths he goes to shape Angel to be a source of strength for him to rely upon, define the width of her pelvis and determine modifications of her flesh. Even when Angel is apart from Tom, even when she hides from his enraged alter ego Ronin, her sex is what they have shaped together. Angel is Tom's muse, his success, and his failures. She is the youthful petite graceful dancer with her shuffling two step, and the older and wiser woman who rails at her sexual nature while giving in to her lusty needs for a price. Her role reaches backward and forward within Tom's existence, and his frustration comes from not knowing why.
Plunge into her story!"London DJ (An Angel Story)"
Tom’s planning a night out at a new club in a new town, but there’s no way to avoid the locals. Maybe meeting Angel was a gift after dealing with some hoodlums, but she’s more than she seems in ways Tom doesn’t know. Dancing, diner, sex! [Includes: MF, Vaginal Sex, Romance, Cheating]
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